Monday, November 30, 2009

Chester 5000 XYV: Steampunk Electrosex Web Comic (NSFW)


Chester 5000 XYV is not like any other web comic I've recommended before. It's a steampunk comic drawn by Jess Fink about a busy man that can't satisfy his wife so he makes her a sex robot. And, well, it goes on from there...

Great premise, right?

It cracks me up how it's further "old-timey" by not being a "talkie" i.e. no dialogue is used because everything is portrayed in the images.

It's ridiculous, hilarious, awesome, weird and sexy good times.

You should seriously check it out.

Related posts:
Megan Rose Gedris: Lesbian Comic Artist Extraordinaire!
My Top 5 Web Comics
Why I Love Comic Books

Like what you see? Subscribe here

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Truth, Love, Blood and Bones Available NOW!


I'm so freaking excited! I'm a self-published author, of a real live book!

In the hopes of tempting you to buy this 41 poem volume for yourself or your favorite literary geek (the holidays they are a'coming....), here are my favorite few poems from Truth, Love, Blood and Bones.

Curiosity
I am like a goat butting
my hard head and tiny horns against everyone
and everything I come across, if only to find out what
they’re made of. I’m made of stubbornness
and questions. My cry could be a laugh.
I hop rock to rock, restless explorer.

Growing Pains
Pain accepted becomes power
the way a gift of seeds blossoms with love.
My pain grew a dogwood tree flowering,
soft pink petals bearing mauve stigmata like the bloodstain
blooms hidden in my mattress. My woman’s wound
flows with blood mysterious as transubstantiation, the pain
twisting me like a dogwood while my sap runs
through this curving form, expressing in beauty
the pain that is my power.

Women Grow Strong (this is the poem that inspired the title)
Women grow strong in
their silence - the calm before the storm -
gathering truth, love, blood and bones into a hurricane of
righteous fury that can lift the roof up right over you
in a swirling chaos working to destroy what is
to make the land suitable for planting something new.
Women grow strong in silence like a snake
slipping through the forest,
knowledge leaping straight to our tongues on the breeze
as we grow beyond and leave behind
the skins that would contain us.
Women grow strong in silence
like ears of corn pulling power into their sweet, meaty kernels
direct from the sun. Bursting like the Corn Maiden
from green and gold silk, we disperse ourselves
to feed a nation only too happy to devour us systematically,
left to right, then back again.
Women grow strong in silence
and under pressure, melting like rocks
in the face of insurmountable odds,
coalescing into something greater, more dynamic, more liquid.
Together we rise up out of the throat of silence -
lava pouring from a mountain -
blazing trails through wilderness,
destroying the casual assumptive power of the civilized,
and changing the landscape of our lives.

New Legs
Although dreams come cloaked in vulpine velvet
of seeming softness but with hidden teeth,
although the pale, florid, petaled flowers we give
the dying only die themselves, dropping one by one
in their mission of mercy, although the mind’s delicious imagination
must twist serene delight to turbulent delirium, although
trees can form - but also topple - houses
which we erect about us in self-righteous strength,
although we each have a will
but no soul except those with which we wander,
my footfalls must follow close behind
the shaky steps you take with such new legs.

Xocolatl
Give me xocolatl to crush between these teeth
(as I eye your neck longingly). I will swallow
the dark sweetness, thinking of the damp earth,
inhaling the smell after rain which promises new beginnings.
Once I watched a bird
die between the jaws of a starving cat,
surprise extinguishing in those obsidian dewdrops
before the growling force even came to a stop.
Feathers fluttered helplessly the way your pale moonlit limbs struggled once
against your bonds before submitting in a slump
for my ravenous mouth. I take another bite
of the chocolate, crumbling it across my tongue
before thrusting it between your lips, feeding you
the way the bird fed the cat: with intimate exchange of fluids.
I kiss you hard on those sweet lips,
rub my head on your chest cat-like,
breathing in your scent of moss and dew,
all the while your heart flaps like a bird against your ribs.

Magician
You pull secrets from my throat like scarves
one after another
pouring through my lips so swiftly,
flashing like semaphores through the air
into your pocket.
Only then do I realize
the empty spaces between my spleen,
liver,
kidneys,
gallbladder,
heart,
intestines.
I’d been stuffing myself with secrets but you so easily found
the thread leading through my squishy gut labyrinth and
hauled out my soul as if water from a well.
Magician, your scarves have turned
my greatest fears into brightly colored prayer flags. In your hands
they are beautiful and sacred.


You can purchase this as a real book or an e-book at QOOP.com where you can also read the first 10 pages.

Seriously, it's good stuff.

Related posts:
Time Lines: Local Poetry Anthology
Poetry Exercise of Yesteryear
My Top 10 Books of 2008

Like what you see? Subscribe here

Monday, November 23, 2009

Women's Business Expo Nov. 29-30

The feminist book club I'm in is putting on a Women's Business Expo November 29-30. I'm going to be one of the vendors. I'll be selling a bunch of original drawings I have and maybe some collages if I feel like it. Now here's some official information about it:

Please join us over two days, Sunday, November 29th, and Monday, November 30th, for our "Supporting Women in Business" Local Gift and Service Expo! Come support local women's businesses, everything from catering to Avon, and original artwork to clothing and accessories. You can pick up stocking stuffers, cross off everything on your holiday shopping, AND put your money where your mouth is, by supporting organizations that truly empower women. We will also have food and drink (appetizers, desserts, lemonade and iced tea), so you can nosh while you shop!

Find out about wonderful businesses, services, and products you never knew existed! Get all your holiday shopping done in a quick, pleasant, and conscious manner! Meet other smart, cool women, eat great food and drink, and make new friends. Support women (and families) worldwide in their business endeavors, through our donations to CARE International.

Sunday, November 29th, 2:00 – 6:00 PM
Monday, November 30th, 5:00 – 8:00 PM
2907 S. 45th Terr., Kansas City, KS 66106

2 blocks West of I-635 and Shawnee Drive in Turner District of KCK. Take the Shawnee Drive exit (not the same as Shawnee Mission Parkway!), turn West, go past KFC/Taco Bell on your right, McDonalds, Phillips 66, and Orowheat Bread Store on your Left. Just past the bread store, turn Left onto our street, S. 45 Terr. Call 913-384-9593 if you get lost!

More info about this event is at: http://women.meetup.com/577
To learn more about CARE, visit http://www.care.org/. CARE is a leading humanitarian organization fighting global poverty. We place special focus on working alongside poor women
because, equipped with the proper resources, women have the power to help whole families and entire communities escape poverty.

Hope to see you there!

Some other neato local sales coming up include: Indigo Wild is having a sale at the local factory where everything will be half-off on December 10th, according to my friend who works there, and Murray's Ice Cream will be having a clearance sale December 6 before they close for the year.

Support local business and build community!

Related posts:
Dharma Gallery Now Open in Westport
Gifted Hands Stops Domestic Violence Before it Starts
Like what you see? Subscribe here

Friday, November 20, 2009

Check Out My First Commissioned Painting

It's 38" by 42" in acrylic paint with some Sharpie. It looks even better in real life.

It's a portrait of one of my blog readers and her husband. She wanted it Klimt-esque.

If YOU want to have a super awesome personal peice of art made for you, shoot me an e-mail at reddvenus AT gmail DOT com.

More stuff I made is on deviantArt.com.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Building Rome's "Nightmare" (Album Review)

I was one of the lucky 1,000 fans to take advantage of receiving St. Louis band Building Rome's latest album, Nightmare, for free!

I heard them soon after I moved back to the area when they played the same night as my friend Kara's band and really loved their enthusiasm, sense of fun and overall sound. I bought a CD that night and was horrified when I listened to it later that absolutely none of the keyboard had translated to the recording and that they sounded nothing like the awesome-fun band I had heard the night before.

So I was really looking forward to listening to something new that had been recorded and mixed better and I was not a bit disappointed. Generally, the album focuses on relationships, mostly the parts of them that will drive you crazy. Some bands they remind me of include Sugarcult, Kaiser Chiefs mixed with some OK Go and She Wants Revenge.

What Are We Fighting For - This was the opening track that starts out quiet and quickly explodes into full sound. I like the sound of this, it was catchy in a good way. It's vaguely anti-war, but the lyrics half the time seem totally random. Good song, but not stellar.

Tired of Waking Up - A mellow, happy-go-lucky song about being trapped in your head by memories you wish you could live again. Lots of gentle longing and I really enjoyed the overall feel and flow of the song.

Bring Me Home - This song is the answer to "Tired of Waking Up," where the protagonist wakes up to find that he's in his happy dream where he's with his sweetheart instead of waking up alone. It's full of sweet-nothings, painting the picture of a tender angel-blessed romance.

If This Is Where It Ends - This song is basically a bridge between "Bring Me Home" and "Nightmare." It has a single line and lasts for one minute. I didn't even notice it was a separate song until I was listening to the album for this post.

Nightmare - Once more it seems our happy couple's good luck has come to an end. Once more, they're splitting up and the 'I' in the song is taking apart their ex, while complaining about how their heart has been ripped apart. Just a good, solid break ups suck kind of song with a good fast pace driving it along.

Dr. Doctor - This song continues the theme of suffering carried over from "Nightmare" but now our singer's agony is caused by being in love again. He's begging for relief from his suffering. "Dr. Doctor I've been pulling out my hair/Just give me something, just make me impaired./Dr. Doctor, I'm tearing at the seams/She's in my dreams, I'm meeting her there/Because I'm living in a nightmare." In my opinion, this is one of the catchiest tunes on the album. There's a fun balance between a gentle melody and a frantic sense of urgency.

Sink Like an Anchor - This song reminds me of a lilting Celtic-esque melody. It's the type of song that you might sway back and forth to drunkenly with your friends in some random bar. This song is about being alone in order to protect a beloved. Kind of haunting, bitter sweet and lots of fun to listen to.

Burn (Take Cover) - This is probably my favorite song on the album because it's about a crazy powerful woman boys are afraid of. Like a domme's not gonna eat that shit up. It had my favorite lyrics: "Take cover run as fast as you can/That little girl's got a gun in her hands/And she's got eyes of fire, eyes of fire./ You're burned burned by your mission of sin/She'll take you out before you've taken her in/And I have no desire to burn." A fun rock romp.

Haunting Me - More pop-y, this song tells the story of a guy who can't get an ex out of his head because everything around him reminds him of her. I like that the cheery music contrasts with lyrics that would be ridiculously emo if the singer didn't sound just so darn peppy.

Last Time Again - This song turns all the meaning of the rest around abit by making the entire album seem about the same on-again-off-again relationship. The singer is begging his love to give them just one more chance. Lots of longing, but not too whiny about it, so I like that. I also like that it makes the rest of the album cohesive and makes the first song make more sense in context of the rest, since all this struggling to be together seems to be "What We're Fighting For." I like when albums tell complete stories, so this song and the effect it has on the others made me really happy.

Orange Case - Once more, the singer is asking for forgiveness from the beloved. Back together again, he's now done something to piss her off (possibly drug related) and is trying to make up. A nice pop-y alternative song.

Streetlights - This song is the climax of the album where we finally "see" the couple consumating their relationship. The singer is offering sex and a relationship as something they can believe in, implying that god is unreliable. He proposes having dirty sex in the girlfriend's car: "I'm gonna tear you apart under the street lights, baby/Fog up the glass in your car, no one will see under the streetlights, baby." Like the lyrics, the music is a bit grungier than some of the other songs.

Overall, this was a well made album that I have already enjoyed listening to several times. You should check it out.

You can listen to several songs off Nightmare at Building Rome's Myspace page or purchase the album on their website. And here's a video of their lead singer Jon and some band mates being ridiculous. "Nightmare" is playing in the background:

Building Rome (LivingInANightmare.com) | MySpace Video

Related posts:
Missouri Music: A Video Primer
Kaiser Chief's "Off With Their Heads" (Album Review)
MC Frontalot's Nerdcore

Like what you see? Subscribe here

Monday, November 16, 2009

Ender's Game the Comic Is a Total Suckfest

Ender's Game is an amazing book. The series (and the Shadow series) just continued to boggle my mind. But the fucking comic sucks.

My fiance's been reading it for a while (he reads them on his computer and I can never find the files I'm looking for on there... all I ever find is pron) but I finally was looking over his shoulder this weekend and was horrified at how awful it was. The story, dialogue and pretty much everything only makes sense if you've read the novel already. The faces the little kid's keep making look like they were drawn for people 30 years older and shrunk down to fit their heads. And there's zero emotion, which is like 90% of what the damn book was about.

The drawing style overall is completely unimpressive, including the cop-out depiction of the battle room, which looks like they stole images from the Hubble and put them behind floaty kids. Woopie doo. ::eyeroll::

I am sad that Card's awesome vision got such pathetic treatment.

Anyone else seen this? What do you think?

Related posts:
Why I Love Comic Books
Science Fiction to Mess with Your Mind
Amnesia Moon Rising

Like what you see? Subscribe here

Friday, November 13, 2009

Asperger's and Insanity

Image property of Bryan Prindiville

For so many years of my life, I would watch myself make a social faux pas and be incapable of stopping the words from coming out of my mouth. Or I would realize by the dead silence after a comment that I'd done something very, very wrong. I'd agonize for hours, days, months, even YEARS afterwards, so frustrated by what I'd done and incapable of understanding what was broken in me that made me so different. I worried I was insane like my grandmother who recently died, who was institutionalized multiple times and tried to kill my dad and his siblings more than once. I was seriously concerned about being mentally defective.

Those little gaffes are much easier to deal with now that I know I have Asperger's. I can just say "oh, I had an Asperger's moment, I'll try and do better next time something like that happens" and for the most part, move on (or at least not die of embarassment). But for most of my life, having Asperger's and not knowing about it just made me terribly afraid of being crazy.

So I found it quite interesting to find out that Asperger's Syndrome is being removed from the upcoming version of The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, published by the American Psychiatric Association. Now I'm officially not crazy.

OFFICIALLY.

Related posts:
Life as an Aspergian Female
About Face
Asperger's and the Internet

Like what you see? Subscribe here

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Wordless Wednesday: At Home with May & Family

(multiple pictures of Inky only because he was following me around and getting in the way, i.e. being adorable)

Related posts:
Wordless Wednesday: Looking Around My Desk
Seen Around Midtown: Named Apartments
Seen Around Midtown: Whimsical Neighborhood

Like what you see? Subscribe here

Monday, November 9, 2009

Dharma Gallery Now Open in Westport

This weekend I was pleasantly surprised to find an open sign outside of the building right across from the post office on the alley side (that's 3854 Central). It's a building that's been empty for quite a while and we've been waiting for something new to show up there ever since we saw the signs of someone cleaning and remodeling it.

We went inside and there was finally something to tell us the name: Dharma Gallery. Not exactly a regular gallery though, more like a vintage store/art gallery mashup. That was neat enough but after chatting with one of the owners we found out that they also have plans for a community garden and farmer's market in their parking lot area. HALLELUJAH! I'm so excited! I've wanted a community garden for a couple years now.

You should go check them out and say hello... but don't buy that retro black hat with the veil... I'm coming back for that!

Friday, November 6, 2009

Zombieland

I'm not a fan of horror movies in general. They bore the shit out of me. Zombie (and monster) movies, on the other hand, are fucking fabulous. My favorites are Night of the Living Dead, Dead Alive, Shaun of the Dead, Fido, Zombie Strippers, and now Zombieland.

The first endearing thing about Zombieland is the story's hero who goes by the name Columbus, Ohio. Jesse Eisenberg who plays him is the unholy twin of Michael Cera, whom I adore. His acting, his speech patterns and even his mannerisms were so much like Cera that I kept forgetting it wasn't him the first time I saw it. Eisenberg is slightly less cherubic, however, which was good considering his character was meant to be an anti-social jerk.

The second thing I loved was that Columbus has a list of rules to live by that have kept him alive and the success of the characters often hinged on whether or not they followed those rules. I thought this was a really fun take on the unwritten rules that horror films tend to follow and it also made Columbus' survival in Zombieland more believable and his neurosis more obvious. A device this simple doing more than one thing to bolster the story impressed me.

The third best thing about Zombieland was THE BEST CAMEO EVER! I don't want to ruin it by saying anything else, but Oh.My.God I laughed so hard I started coughing.

The fourth best thing was that there were zero red shirts! The only humans were the main characters and everyone else was nothing but zombie or zombie food. I felt it gave a nice simplicity to the story AND also made it creepier that you felt these were the only non-zombies left in what used to be the U.S. of A.

The best overall was how the movie was hilarious and optimistic and a bunch of fun while still being dark and somewhat scary.

On the down side: I didn't like that the zombies were fast zombies. I'm against fast zombies on principle. Decaying flesh wouldn't operate BETTER than undecayed flesh. I mean, come on! And the zombies also liked to puke blood up which was pretty gross. Then, the final scene also had some totally would never work anywhere except in a movie aspects to it that drew away from the fairly harsh realism of the rest of the movie.


(There is a video embedded in this post.)


Related posts:
Cloverfield: Movie Review
My Top 5 Movies
Action Movies: You're Doing It Wrong
Like what you see? Subscribe here